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Film Reviews

For Your Consideration

Don't trust the "awards bait" when looking for movie greatness this fall

By Scott Renshaw
POSTED // Sep 6,2013 - At last, the summer movie season is over. For those who found themselves frustrated by a nonstop parade of superhero fantasies, apocalyptic extravaganzas and boneheaded comedies, there’s a feeling in the air

Film Reviews

Passion

Brian De Palma gives Passion plenty of too-familiar Brian De Palma-ness

By Eric D. Snider
POSTED // Aug 30,2013 - Oh, Brian De Palma. What a special, trashy, highly competent auteur you are! No one makes lurid erotic thrillers with more consistency or panache than this guy.

Film Reviews

The World's End

Edgar Wright again gives simple pleasures something extra

By Scott Renshaw
POSTED // Aug 23,2013 - It’s hard not to sound condescending when I suggest that Edgar Wright doesn’t merely make “genre movies.” Despite the enduring frustrations of many professional film writers wi

Film Reviews

Blue Jasmine

The jokes are few, but Woody Allen still delivers

By Scott Renshaw
POSTED // Aug 23,2013 - More than 40 years into Woody Allen’s filmmaking career, it’s still somewhat disorienting when he bypasses most overt comedy and fantastical premises for a straightforward character study like Sweet & Lowdown.

Film Reviews

Lee Daniels' The Butler

A director earns his credit in the messy, emotional Lee Daniels' The Butler

By Scott Renshaw
POSTED // Aug 16,2013 - Thanks to a lawsuit challenging The Weinstein Company’s right to use the title The Butler—one that, depending on your sympathies, is either “protecting intellectual property” or “typical petty Hollywood dick-swinging”

Film Reviews

Elysium

Elysium squanders its style on painfully obvious allegory

By Scott Renshaw
POSTED // Aug 9,2013 - It’s a little bit silly to talk about a science-fiction film like Elysium being an allegory, because that’s almost a tautology; at its core, all science-fiction and fantasy is fundamentally allegory.

Film Reviews

I'm So Excited!

A troubled flight turns into forced sex farce in I'm So Excited!

By Scott Renshaw
POSTED // Aug 2,2013 - After watching Pedro Almodóvar’s I’m So Excited!, I imagined a hypothetical conversation in which someone tried to describe it to me before I saw it.

Film Reviews

The Smurfs 2

If The Smurfs 2 must exist, this is the best we can hope for

By Scott Renshaw
POSTED // Jul 31,2013 - I pretty much despise that a movie like The Smurfs 2 exists in the world. But if it must exist, this is about the best that we can hope for.

Film Reviews

Fruitvale Station

Fruitvale Station hammers home bitter ironies and the worthiness of its subject

By Scott Renshaw
POSTED // Jul 26,2013 - In the early hours of New Year’s day 2009, Oscar Grant—a 22-year-old African-American man—was shot by a Bay Area transit officer while handcuffed and face-down on the ground at Oakland’s Fruitvale train station.

Film Reviews

Laurence Anyways

Xavier Dolan delivers an emotional epic

By Scott Renshaw
POSTED // Jul 19,2013 - When we first see Laurence Alia (Melvil Poupaud) in Xavier Dolan’s electrifying, emotionally epic Laurence Anyways, we don’t really see him—or “her,” as the case may be.
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